Greetings, hope this finds you well.

Sure, that’s the opening to an email from someone you don’t know pitching something you have no interest in. But I mean it. I hope you are well.

With much of the world being taken over by the coronavirus and COVID-19 pandemic, I wanted to take a moment to reach out to our communities about what to expect from the sports department moving forward.

First things first: I have no idea what to expect. On the Minnesota side, we were ready to get out to some practices to begin the process of season previews. With the shutdown of Wisconsin and Minnesota schools, and with it all practices and games, that is going to be nearly impossible. Getting in touch with coaches is going to be difficult, and even more so with the student-athletes.

Second, I don’t know what each school, and really each individual, will or won’t be comfortable with when it comes to personal contact. It’s an already tricky dance when it comes to getting the phone number of a high school kid, and we go through a system that starts with coaches then to parents and then to the kids, all requiring consent along the way. If anyone says “no,” we move on.

Third – and this is the hardest thing on this side of the relationship – is that we do not know how long this lasts. Right now, school and practices in Minnesota are set to resume Monday, March 30, while games can be scheduled Monday, April 6. Wisconsin has set April 6 as the date to resume school and practices, and possibly games, though that would be pie-in-the-sky at this point.

But as we have seen over the last week, what happened yesterday has no bearing on today, let alone three weeks out.

Finally, we want to have a sports section in every paper and on our website. How do we do that? To start, we’d like to hear from you on if there is something that we could cover, even at a distance. Perhaps you have been sitting on an idea and want to get it out there. Send it in to sports@republican-eagle.com.

This is a very trying time that is quite unprecedented, at least in my nearly four decades on this planet. (That hurt to type out.) But we’ll get through to the other side. We have a great newsroom that wants to inform our communities as much as possible and we’ll continue to do so.